CIBC creates a miracle by helping to build Canada's leading universal accessible playground



    $150,000 Donation will help to create a place where children of all
    abilities can play

    TORONTO, June 11 /CNW/ - CIBC (CM: TSX;NYSE) - CIBC World Markets
Children's Foundation, announced today that it has donated $150,000 to Neshama
Playground, a universal accessible playground being built at Oriole Park in
Toronto. The playground will include features to engage and integrate children
with a range of physical and cognitive skills and abilities.
    "On behalf of the leadership behind Neshama Playground, and the children
who will use it, we commend the CIBC World Markets Children's Foundation for
being a first mover in helping us create a premier universal accessible place
for children of all abilities to play together," said Melony Jamieson,
president of Get it Done Inc. and one of the key organizers behind Neshama
Playground.
    "CIBC's early and generous financial support for this initiative has
helped recruit other donors. This support will ensure Neshama is not only
going to be the best playground in Toronto but also a model for future
universal playgrounds. CIBC's gift will ultimately help children with
disabilities in other centres throughout the province and the country," adds
Ms. Jamieson.
    Neshama, meaning "one soul" in Hebrew, is a joint initiative between a
local citizens group, who are fundraising $1 million from the private sector,
and the City of Toronto, who are contributing the land at Oriole Park and
other infrastructure supports for this revolutionary playground. With the lead
donation from CIBC World Markets Children's Foundation, donations to this
playground total more than $700,000 to date.
    Beyond accessible physical play structures for children with physical
disabilities, Neshama will also create opportunities for creative, sensory,
educational and dramatic play experiences to stimulate children with different
skills or cognitive conditions. Accessible features such as washrooms, paths,
and seating will also accommodate parents with special needs. Neshama has
convened an Accessibility Advisory Council of leading community service
organizations to provide input about the needs of children with a wide range
of skills and abilities.
    "The CIBC World Markets Children's Foundation was established to make a
difference in the lives of children and to help prepare them for their
future," says John Gildner, Managing Director with CIBC World Markets.
"Neshama Playground will make a real difference for many children who, up to
now, have been excluded from many of our parks and playgrounds because of
existing barriers to entry, prohibitive surfaces, inaccessible structures,
inappropriate play spaces and transportation issues.
    "All kids should have the right to play and, thanks to the vision and
commitment of Thomas and Theo Caldwell, who are driving the private sector
fundraising, and the City of Toronto, we will soon have a playground that is
accessible and inclusive for all."

    On the first Wednesday of December every year, CIBC World Markets sales
and trading professionals and CIBC Wood Gundy Investment Advisors help create
miracles for children through Miracle Day. On this day, fees and commissions
are donated to charities dedicated to improving the health, well-being and
education of children. Since its inception in 1984, more than $190 million has
been raised to benefit children in our communities globally.

    CIBC is committed to supporting causes that matter to our clients, our
employees and our communities. We aim to make a difference in communities
through corporate donations, sponsorships and the volunteer spirit of
employees. With a strategic focus on youth, education and health, and employee
commitment to causes including the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run
for the Cure, United Way and the CIBC World Markets Children's Foundation, we
are investing in the social and economic development of communities across the
country. In 2007, CIBC group of companies contributed more than $36 million
worldwide to charitable organizations and community initiatives. Of this,
$27 million was invested in Canada to support national, regional and local
organizations. To learn more, visit www.cibc.com/pas
    For more information about Neshama Playground and how to get involved or
make a donation, visit www.neshamaplayground.ca or call 416-304-3931.





For further information:

For further information: Kevin Dove, Director, Communications, CIBC,
Tel: (416) 980-8835, kevin.dove@cibc.com


Custom Packages

Browse our custom packages or build your own to meet your unique communications needs.

Start today.

CNW Membership

Fill out a CNW membership form or contact us at 1 (877) 269-7890

Learn about CNW services

Request more information about CNW products and services or call us at 1 (877) 269-7890